According to government officials, at least 85 people were killed and more than 50 injured on Wednesday when a fuel truck exploded in South Sudan’s rural Western Equatoria state.
Ateny Wek Ateny, on Thursday, Presidential spokesman said that 50 others were injured in the blast which took place in Maridi when a truck carrying petrol veered off the road.
Ateny said, citing the accounts of local authorities, the tanker was full of petrol and begin to leak and residents were siphoning off petrol when someone lit a cigarette that sparked an explosion of the vehicle.
He said the injured were taken to local hospitals which are overcrowded.
Oil tanker and Fuel leaks accidents in Africa often draw massive crowds scrambling to scoop up the fuel, that results in many deaths due to accidental explosion.
Sparked by over 21-months of civil war, South Sudan is also in the grip of a dire economic crisis, that has caused soaring prices of basics and rampant inflation, including fuel and food.
The violence has left the impoverished country split along ethnic lines and tens of thousands of people dead.
More than 2 million people have fled their homes in a war marked by the use of child soldiers and gang rapes.